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Old 03-12-2012, 07:33 PM
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Default 3.4 Starter "How To"

My original starter finally gave out on my 1993 3.4L Firebird. Not bad for 19 years and 175,000 miles.

I searched on here and other sites for some "how to" knowledge, but I found lots of conflicting information. So, hopefully somebody searches for this subject in the future and finds this thread. Here are the facts.

You DO NOT need to drop the exhaust Y Pipe to do this job. When I looked at the 19 year old bolts on both manifolds, I knew that was not an option. I have changed many starters in my lifetime, and this was by far the most challenging. So, here is how I did it on my 1993 3.4L Firebird, Automatic Trans:
  • Raise vehicle on ramp or jackstands.
  • Disconnect battery.
  • Remove flywheel cover (4 bolts)
  • Unbolt Starter (2 Bolts)
  • Reposition starter and disconnect electrical connections (2 Wires)
  • Reposition starter and remove heat shield (2 Nuts)
  • Reposition starter so that it is upside down and backwards.
  • The starter will now get caught between the exhaust and the transmission cooler lines as you try to remove it.
  • Carefully bend the trans cooler lines towards the transmission.
  • The starter will now slide out (barely)

The new starter had a sticker on it that said "Next Gen". It slid in with ease. Looks like the new starters are a tiny bit smaller, so they fit through the opening.

For install, reverse the above procedures. You will need to slowly bend the trans cooler lines back in order to reinstall the flywheel cover.

My car now starts like a champ. I did not realize how slowly the original starter actually cranked. What a difference the new one makes. Purchased from RockAuto.com, my favorite parts supplier.
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Old 03-12-2012, 11:46 PM
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if somebody wants to move this to the "how to" section, I'll sticky it.
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:55 AM
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Very nice right up! thanks for clearing up some of those details there.
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Old 03-13-2012, 09:17 AM
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Thanks guys. Hopefully it will be useful to other members.
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Old 03-13-2012, 09:21 AM
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I'm going to move this to the how to's section.
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Old 04-03-2012, 07:29 AM
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My car has headers, I have the exhaust where I can undo both collectors and where the y pipe comes together, and completely remove the y pipe to remove the starter. your not gonna wiggle the starter out if you have headers, you can forget that dream.
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Old 04-04-2012, 01:41 AM
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Good write up, I hope i do not have to do this for a long long time.
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Old 04-04-2012, 07:11 AM
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yeah it sucks either way, but once I have the y pipe outta the way I have room to work.
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Old 03-15-2013, 06:38 PM
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I have a 95 3.4L V6 Manual 5-speed. There are no transmission cooler lines that I can find. I have heard about them in the 6spd V8's and now Auto V6's but I swear I have none of that going on. Also, my starter has 3 bolts, the wires to disconnect have 2 nuts. So something is clearly different. The Y-pipe is still the issue. I have about 1/4-1/2" before the starter will slide out. Does anyone have any new info?
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Old 03-15-2013, 08:57 PM
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your T-5 trans doesn't have cooler lines. but about the y pipe issue , some of our 3.4 guy will have to chime in on that.
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